Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Brunswick, ME, United States

The collapsing US military & economic empire is making Washington & NATO even more dangerous. US could not beat the Taliban but thinks it can take on China-Russia-Iran...a sign of psychopathology for sure. We must all do more to help stop this western corporate arrogance that puts the future generations lives in despair. @BruceKGagnon

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Should we 'Recapitalize' the military industrial complex?

I've been working on a speech I will be giving in late September to Nebraskans for Peace.  I will talk about STRATCOM (Strategic Command) which is headquartered at Offutt AFB in Omaha. 

I have been watching videos of speeches by the present and past commanders of STRATCOM.  STRATCOM's mission includes Dominant intelligence, space surveillance and reconnaissance, electronic attack, nuclear command & control, 'Missile defense' and more.  They made the point that the biggest task today is to integrate all of these warfare systems into one big operational capability. They brag that STRATCOM is in charge of more than 150,000 personnel around the world.

You could call STRATCOM 'Wars R Us'.

The STRATCOM commanders talked alot about this being the 'era of great power competition' and they made certain to demonize Russia, China, North Korea and Iran as our latest enemies. 

These countries are indeed increasing their military capabilities as they see US-NATO bases expanding and encircling them.  When these four latest 'enemies' respond to US provocative military moves we hear Washington demanding that we 'counter their responses'.

It's an old game that has been run since the US Army wars against the Native Americans.  When Crazy Horse surrendered and was put on the reservation in South Dakota the then emerging military industrial complex had fake news stories published in the big newspapers across the country saying that the Lakota warrior was back on the war path killing white women and children.  It was a lie but Congress swung into action and appropriated more $$$ for the Indian wars that by the late 1870's were essentially over.

It's been the same story ever since.  Sound the alarm - frighten the public - claim that we (the biggest war spender on the planet) are in danger of being attacked.  The politicians are paid off with campaign donations and our economy becomes addicted to military production. It's quite a simple formula that most Americans repeatedly fall for.  Even most liberals in Washington.

The Pentagon is not satisfied with their current $1 trillion per year military budget  - $750 billion plus the other costs like nuclear weapons that are hidden in the Department of Energy budget, etc.

STRATCOM is claiming that they need even more money to 'recapitalize' the nuclear triad (nuclear forces deployed on bombers, submarines and underground missile silos).

It must be remembered that the Repubs and Dems get along just fine on the issue of funding the endless war budget. The Congress passed during Obama (and continued under Trump) the nuclear modernization program for the next 20 years at the cost of $1 trillion.

The Pentagon wants new submarines, and new nuclear missiles for them.  They want new aircraft carriers because most of the present ones are unreliable.  They want more 'Missile defense' systems (the shield that would be used after a US first-strike attack is launched on Russia and/or China) on the air, land and at sea.  They want new command & control centers to coordinate the nuclear triad. They want new military satellites that would help direct World War III.

The military industrial complex has a plan to pay for all of this as well.  They want to defund Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid and what little is left of the 'social safety net'.  This is likely one key reason why both parties oppose Medicare4All.

You'd think that in an election year the ever expanding military budget would be an issue.  Especially during a virus pandemic and massive economic shutdown where millions are out of work and soon to be evicted for non-payment of rents or mortgages.

But it is not.  Why?



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